First of all, congratulations for being accepted to IE: one of the top ten MBAs in the world, and located in Madrid and nearby Segovia, a city made to enjoy and discover Spain during a term, 2 years or more.
Your time in Madrid will surely be frantic, divided between intense studies and the will to discover as much of Madrid, Spain and Europe as possible during your stay.
Therefore these are my answers to the 4 key relocation questions I have been asked for IE students, who have been readers of this blog and/or clients, and will enable you to start well and get the most out of your stay.
When should I start searching ?
IE means very demanding agendas and workload, so please do arrive in Madrid before the start of your program.
I recommend arriving 1 week before if you plan to use the help of a professional like Moving2Madrid who will ensure you get the best and organize viewings on the best date.
If you have friends in Madrid, know Spanish, and are ready to spend full time searching and viewing, I recommend you arrive 3 weeks in advance.
Which neighborhood is the best to live in ?
First of all, check you will will be on Madrid campus, calle Maria de Molina, and not in Segovia (the campus for Bachelor students).
If it’s the case, I would recommend the 3 following neigborhoods (see map and click on the links for detailed description, videos and photos):
- Salamanca: it’s the neighborhood of IE, the most upperclass of Madrid, near the centre with all the services you need. Within walking distance of IE. The obvious choice if you have the budget for this exclusive neighborhood.
- Alonso Martinez: another exclusive neighborhood, but more trendy and young than Salamanca, right between the centre and IE.
- Chamberi: a good alternative if Salamanca is too expensive for your budget, just west of IE and Salamanca.
If you are in Segovia, you first have to make the choice to live in Madrid or there, and then to either choose to take the speed train every day, or buy a car.
How can I find an apartment ?
In a nutshell, you have two options:
- you speak Spanish, are ready to spend 2 weeks full-time searching and viewing, and have friends in Madrid,
- you use the services of the only flathunter and relocation company specialized for young students and professionals like you: Moving2Madrid. You will only have to spend 1 half-day viewing the very best pre-viewing apartments according to your tastes, with support throughout your stay for all your relocation questions and isues: bank accounts, mobile phone, internet, papers… more information here.
Yes, moving to Madrid is not as easy at it seems, and without support, it is too stressful, time-consuming and expensive in the end. For instance, apartment quality standards are not what you expect and have to know where and how to search and negociate for the best.
What apartment can I afford with my budget ?
- Room in Shared Flat: 400 – 550 € per month
- Studio, 3o to 50 m2: 700 – 900 € per month
- 1 Bedroom Apartment, 55-80 m2: 900 – 1400 € per month
- 2 Bedroom Apartment, 80-100 m2:1200 – 1700 € per month
- 3 bedroom apartment, 100-120 m2: 1500 – 2000 € per month
To this add an extra 20% on top if you need to rent between 6 to 10 months, and 40% if it’s for less than 6 months.
Read this for more details on the cost of living in Madrid.
All the essential information to cover all the aspects of your move
To conclude with, here is a list of links to the essential articles to organize your move:
- The best landline & internet deals for newly arrived expats
- The best current account for newly arrived expats
- Your NIE in 3 steps
- Rent, Buy or Bring your Furniture when Relocating to Madrid ?
- The Cost of Living in Madrid – What lifestyle can I afford ?
- The Cost of Living in Madrid – Utility Bills, Extras & Surprises to avoid
If you have questions, or need help to choose your exact neighborhood, optimize your budget and get the best apartment, send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.